Charges: Rape suspect wanted accuser to 'disappear' and 'swim with the worms'
SEATTLE - When 45-year-old Raymond Salo found himself accused of drugging and raping a woman in his custody for five days, he wanted her gone.
That's what King County prosecutors say in charges filed Friday, alleging that Salo offered to pay an undercover detective posing as a hitman to kill the 28-year-old woman.
After being jailed on unrelated warrants, Salo confided in a fellow inmate at Snohomish County Jail about the woman who reported his attacks on her and expressed that he wanted her "swimming with the worms," investigators claim.
That inmate cooperated with authorities to set Salo up with a fake hit against the woman, reports say.
King County Sheriff's Office deputies reported spotting Salo getting out of a vehicle with stolen license plates with the alleged victim on July 9 in Lake City.
When stopped, the woman claimed she met Salo five days earlier when he offered to take her to the store, but he forced her to stay with him. According to charging papers, she told deputies he repeatedly assaulted her, even sexually, and that on one occasion he injected her with methamphetamine against her will and raped her.
Authorities booked Salo into King County Jail on two outstanding Snohomish County warrants. He was transferred to Snohomish County Jail in Everett two days later.
The woman underwent a forensic examination looking for signs of rape and was found to be covered in bruises, according to court records.
A Seattle detective fielded a phone call July 24 from an attorney representing a Snohomish County inmate who became acquainted with Salo, reports indicate. The attorney said her client wanted to speak with detectives.
The inmate claimed he had bonded with Salo and began taking notes on their conversations, including one in which Salo described his desire to get the alleged victim out of state so she could not testify against him in a rape case. Salo reportedly asked the inmate if he could have someone find her and the inmate he said he had friends who could do it.
According to police, Salo then handed the inmate a letter, which the inmate turned over to detectives. The letter says, in part, "she needs to recant take back what you said to Seattle/lake city pd goodwill [sic] parking lot." It also describes where to find the woman and that his family is willing to pay the woman off with up to $25,000, according to the Seattle Police Department.
During the next week, however, Salo's intentions reportedly became more violent, including repeated statements that she needed to "swim with the worms." He also reportedly said she should be taken to Mexico and "sold to a donkey show" and that he wanted the inmate to "broker a contract to dispose of her," according to the inmate's notes.
Salo reportedly posited to the inmate July 22: "If I give you $10,000, would you make her (expletive) disappear?"
He allegedly added, "I don't give a (expletive) if she's dead, swim with the worms." He also said, "if there is no victim in the case there can't be a trial and he will be let go," according to the incident report.
The inmate was getting out of jail in a couple weeks, putting him in a position to find the woman.
Detectives met with the inmate again July 27, when the inmate reported Salo had a plan to kill the woman. Because she was allergic to heroin, he allegedly proposed giving her a "hotshot," or a lethal dose of heroin. Detectives told the inmate to let Salo know that his "friend" -- an undercover detective -- would meet with him in two days.
The detective, pretending to be the friend, met with Salo at the Snohomish County Jail on July 29. During that conversation, Salo allegedly described the woman's heroin allergy and described her in detail, including where she hangs out and who her friends are. They settled on a $10,000 payment.
Later that night, Salo called his mother from the jail and when she asked how things were going, he reportedly said, "It could have been really bad, but I think I am going to fix it ... I mean like really bad ... I think I fixed it. That's all I can say about that right now."
During the next several days, Salo made unsuccessful attempts to raise money, according to Seattle police.
The undercover detective returned to meet Salo on Aug. 2 to show him photos of some girls, including the woman targeted. Salo verified that the photo of the alleged victim depicted the woman he wanted dead, reports indicate.
Prosecutors filed charges of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder and solicitation to commit first-degree murder on Friday. He remains held in Snohomish County on $1 million bail.
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